Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation, a device for relieving the pain of labour. Sticky pads are attached to the woman’s back to produce electrical impulses which stimulate her own natural painkillers and block some of the pain signals from the uterus. The unit is battery operated and the woman can control the amount of stimulation herself with a push button device and a variable control dial.
Delivery of the placenta or afterbirth.
The tough-going, final part of the first stage of labour, when the mother may begin to feel the urge to push. Contractions may come thick and fast and can feel very hard to cope with.
A baby who is lying across the uterus horizontally, rather than vertically. In this position the baby cannot be born and there is a high risk of the cord prolapsing.
Trial of labour
A woman with known complications, for example a previous Caesarean birth, may be given a trial of labour to see if she is able to give birth naturally. After a certain time, if labour fails to progress satisfactorily and it seems unlikely that the baby can be delivered safely through the vagina, she will be offered a Caesarean.